Diaper Rash/Nappy Rash
Even the best and most careful of parents may one day go
to change a fussy baby and be startled by the sight of a
bright red, possibly spotty little bottom. No need to panic,
most diaper rashes can easily be treated, and clear up in
two to three days.
Causes of Diaper Rash
- Diaper or nappy rash is caused by heat
and moisture. Wet or dirty diapers left on too long are the
- Diapers that are too tight to let air
in,or chafe baby's skin.
- Diarrhea that is acidic and will
irritate the skin.
- The introduction of new and acidic foods
(citrus or tomatoes for example) will sometimes cause diaper
rash, but will often just cause a redness around the anus.
- A fungal infection such as Candida shows
up in the deep folds of a baby's skin. It is bright red with
an obvious border and there may be small red spots near the
Prevention and Treatment of Diaper Rash
- Keep your baby's skin clean and dry by
changing diapers frequently.
- Always wash baby's bottom at every
diaper change. Use plain warm water, or if soap is needed,
use a very mild soap and rinse with water afterwards. Pat
baby dry, don't rub.
- Make sure the diapers are not too tight
or chafing the baby's skin.
- Allow the baby to go without
a diaper when possible to let the air dry the skin.
- Use zinc ointment or petrolatum (such as
Vaseline) to protect your baby's skin from moisture.
you use cloth diapers, use a moisture-wicking liner to keep
baby's skin dry or change to disposable diapers.
- Avoid plastic pants - they hold in the
- Introduce new foods one at a time so
that you can tell if a particular food is causing a problem.
Breastfeeding moms should also be aware that the food they
eat can sometimes cause diarrhea in their babies.
If the rash is not starting to clear up in three
days, if the baby has a fever or the redness looks more
like a Candida infection, see your family doctor. He or she
can prescribe a medication to apply to the skin and rule out
any other causes.
Sources: www.Caring for Kids.cps.ca (Canadian
(Academy of Family Physicians)
Disclaimer: This short overview
of diaper rash should not be taken as medical advice and may
not apply to everyone. Please always consult your family
physician for medical advice and treatment.